The Israeli ground operation in the Gaza Strip has resulted in anger and protests by Palestinians living in East Jerusalem.
We spoke with euronews’ correspondent in Israel, Valérie Gauriat.
Fabien Farge, euronews: “Valérie Gauriat, you were in the old city of Jerusalem earlier today, one day after the start of the Israeli army’s ground operation in Gaza. Valérie, what was the atmosphere like there?”
Valérie Gauriat: “It’s clear to everybody that there are feelings of frustration, anger and worry. Everything is cordoned off, there are police and military check points pretty much everywhere. But mostly what has angered the people on the streets of Jerusalem this morning are the events in Gaza. In addition to that the pressure that’s being put on the people in East Jerusalem. Earlier this afternoon, I was told that clashes had broken out around the al-Aqsa Mosque. As a result several people were injured and a number of people were arrested. All of this only feeds into the feelings of anger among the Palestinian population in Jerusalem.”
euronews: “As hostilities intensify and the number of victims increases, those vying for peace have been trying to mobilise themselves. Valérie, I believe you saw a demonstration take place.”
Valérie Gauriat: “These peaceful movements are very much in the minority in Israel. The demonstration I saw was organised by an Israeli-Palestinian organisation. But we only saw a few hundred Palestinians among the participants. We were told that the events in Gaza cause too much anger for both sides in the conflict to participate in protests. Away from the demonstration we saw a small counter-protest from a group of extremist Israelis who were calling for Gaza to be razed to the ground. There was quite a tense atmosphere. That group is also in the minority. But among Israelis there is a general feeling of concern and anxiety. The Palestinians don’t understand how Israel, which has the fifth most powerful army in the world can use such force and violence towards a people who are far less powerful in that sense and whom the Israelis claim are being manipulated by Hamas.”